Women's Big Bash League has entered into its fifth season and it is a landmark one. Profile of the tournament has grown over the seasons and it has certainly become more competitive. Success of the tournament is not only reflected by rise in the televised fixtures, but the increased talent pool has complimented success of the national team.
The WBBL|05 will be played in its own window for the first time this season, highlighted by seven consecutive festival weekends around the country that will culminate in a Finals Festival Weekend on December 7-8, giving the country’s best female players an opportunity to take centre stage in a landmark shift away from the men’s BBL.
Increase in number of games will be played that will be played in prime time means more eyeballs will be generated for the broadcasters. WBBL will be the perfect lead-in for the T20 World Cup, to be played on Australian soil for the first time in February and March.
“This is monumental for the women’s game,” Cricket Australia Executive General Manager Fan Engagement Anthony Everard said.
“The players showed that last year with more totals of over 150 than the previous three seasons of the rebel WBBL combined, all culminating into an incredible standalone Finals Festival Weekend.
“Moving the entire tournament to its own standalone period is the first step towards achieving that ultimate goal of being the best women’s league in the world, giving the world’s best female cricketers from across the globe the platform to show fans what they are capable of.”
North Sydney Oval will host the opening weekend on October 18-20, with Sydney Sixers, Sydney Thunder and Brisbane Heat to feature in three matches across the three days.
Elsewhere, WBBL|05 will be launched with matches between Adelaide Strikers and Melbourne Renegades at Karen Rolton Oval in Adelaide, and between Melbourne Stars and Hobart Hurricanes at the CitiPower Centre in Melbourne.
Brisbane’s Allan Border Field, the WACA Ground in Perth, Karen Rolton Oval, Drummoyne Oval in Sydney, Blundstone Arena in Hobart and the CitiPower Centre at Junction Oval will also hold festival weekends.
Outside of the festival weekends, Burnie, Mackay, Launceston and Ballarat are among the regional centres included in the WBBL|05 schedule.
The season will culminate in a Finals Festival Weekend on December 7-8, with the team finishing on top of the ladder to host both semi-finals and the grand final.
“This is something we’ve been building towards and last year’s final series has proved that the rebel WBBL is ready to stand on its own two feet,” Everard said.
“The volume of televised content nearly doubled last season, with the 23 broadcast matches averaging 213,000 on Seven and Fox Cricket.
“To build on this, fans will have a more consistent broadcast offering this season, with seven consecutive festival weekends around the country broadcast live, with all remaining matches streamed on cricket.com.au.
"Festival weekends will also give families the best chance to come and experience the game all around the country.”
WBBL|05 Festival Weekends
- Sydney Festival Weekend | North Sydney Oval – October 18-20
- Brisbane Festival Weekend | AB Field – October 26-27
- Perth Festival Weekend | WACA – November 1-3
- Adelaide Festival Weekend | Karen Rolton Oval – November 9-10
- Sydney Festival Weekend | Drummoyne Oval – November 15-17
- Hobart Festival Weekends | Blundstone Arena - November 22-24
- Melbourne Festival Weekend | CitiPower Centre at Junction Oval - November 30 – December 1
- Finals Festival Weekend | Venue TBC – December 7-8
Also, 23 matches that will be broadcast live on the Seven Network, Fox Cricket and Kayo in Australia below.
|DATE (All times local)||MATCH||VENUE|
|Friday, 18 October @ 7:40pm||Sydney Sixers v Sydney Thunder||North Sydney Oval|
|Saturday, 19 October @ 7:10pm||Sydney Sixers v Brisbane Heat||North Sydney Oval|
|Sunday, 20 October @ 2:10pm||Sydney Thunder v Brisbane Heat||North Sydney Oval|
|Saturday, 26 October @ 9:40am||Adelaide Strikers v Hobart Hurricanes||Allan Border Field|
|Saturday, 26 October @ 1:10pm||Brisbane Heat v Perth Scorchers||Allan Border Field|
|Sunday, 27 October @ 9:40am||Perth Scorchers v Adelaide Strikers||Allan Border Field|
|Sunday, 27 October @ 1:10pm||Brisbane Heat v Hobart Hurricanes||Allan Border Field|
|Friday, 1 November @ 5:40pm||Perth Scorchers v Melbourne Renegades||WACA Ground|
|Saturday, 2 November @ 12:10pm||Melbourne Renegades v Sydney Sixers||WACA Ground|
|Saturday, 2 November @ 3:55pm||Perth Scorchers v Melbourne Stars||WACA Ground|
|Sunday, 3 November @ 11:10am||Sydney Sixers v Melbourne Stars||WACA Ground|
|Saturday, 9 November @ 1:40pm||Adelaide Strikers v Perth Scorchers||Karen Rolton Oval|
|Sunday, 10 November @ 1:40pm||Adelaide Strikers v Melbourne Stars||Karen Rolton Oval|
|Friday, 15 November @ 7:10pm||Sydney Thunder v Sydney Sixers||Drummoyne Oval|
|Saturday, 16 November @ 7:10pm||Brisbane Heat v Sydney Thunder||Drummoyne Oval|
|Sunday, 17 November @ 2:10pm||Sydney Sixers v Melbourne Renegades||Drummoyne Oval|
|Friday, 22 November @ 7:10pm||Hobart Hurricanes v Brisbane Heat||Blundstone Arena|
|Saturday, 23 November @ 7:10pm||Hobart Hurricanes v Adelaide Strikers||Blundstone Arena|
|Saturday, 30 November @ 10:40am||Melbourne Stars v Melbourne Renegades||CitiPower Centre|
|Sunday, 1 December @ 10:40am||Melbourne Renegades v Sydney Thunder||CitiPower Centre|
|Saturday, 7 December||Semi-Final 1||TBC|
|Saturday, 7 December||Semi-Final 2||TBC|
|Sunday, 8 December||Final||TBC|